Teenage Garth Brooks Fan With Rare Disorder Gets Private Show [Watch]
Garth Brooks gave one special fan a very special private performance of "The River" on Friday (April 8) after her family made the drive from Indiana to Kentucky to see him live.
McKenna “Mickey” Phernetton was born with Prader–Willi syndrome, a genetic disorder that leaves her with a constant feeling of hunger. The 19-year-old and her family were treated well by Brooks and his team when they spent some time with the singer before his set.
“[She] can never feel full or satisfied when it comes to food. So basically, it’s just starving all the time,” Mickey's father, Patrick Phernetton, explains. “On top of that, there’s a whole host of medical conditions that go with it. She’s developmentally delayed so she functions at about a first or second grade level."
Brooks invited the Phernetton family to watch his soundcheck and met with Mickey. She told Brooks she wanted to sing a song with him, so he went backstage to grab his guitar so he could sing "The River" with her.
Her father filmed the performance and says it was the happiest he's seen his daughter in months. “She was just grinning from ear to ear. It didn’t matter to him that maybe she didn’t know all the words or couldn’t quite keep up,” Phernetton shares.
Later that night, when Brooks performed "The River" for the full crowd, he asked where Mickey was sitting — something the family appreciated.
"We talked to him for a few seconds after the show and [he] said he saw Mickey and was thinking about her when he sang the song," Phernetton concludes.
Brooks is currently in the midst of his Garth Brooks World Tour with wife Trisha Yearwood.
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